For years residents of Uptown lobbied the City to reform the Uptown Partnership, the agency responsible for administering the community parking district in Hillcrest, Mission Hills, and Banker's Hill. They criticized the agency for ineffectiveness, issues of conflict of interest, and for high administrative costs.
On December 28, the City terminated Uptown Partnership's contract.
Now that the parking agency has been dissolved, residents are concerned that the city isn't moving fast enough to establish a new group to take over. Some residents worry that the absence of a parking district will leave the community barren of new parking projects and strip the cash reserves from Uptown.
"The City indicated it would reform the fiscal administration of the Uptown Community Parking District. At present, Uptown does not have one. Why has this not happened?" asked Leo Wilson, chair of the Uptown Planners, in an email to San Diego City Council.
Wilson is frustrated that Uptown did not have a voice in last week's council decision to approve hiking parking meter fees in Hillcrest. He is also concerned that the community will lose out on any future parking improvement projects.
One of those projects is the lot owned by the Pernicano family on Sixth Avenue between University Avenue and Robinson. Stanley Paul Cook, a representative for the Pernicano family, recently informed community members that the family is marketing the property to developers.
"This was one of the sites identified for a public parking garage in Hillcrest. However, the city bureaucrats are into parking meter management. On this basis, are they going to refuse to fund parking at the Pernicano site? I will be pushing hard to allow use of these funds for additional parking on the property, and I am sure others will as well."
While some residents of Uptown have expressed concern about not having a community parking district, representatives from councilmember Gloria's office say that the city is working to get a new one in place by June. Currently, consultant firm Turpin McLaughlin Communications is developing a concept plan to submit to the City.
Until that plan is submitted, Uptown's parking district will remain dormant. "Identifying future improvements will be on hold until a new group is in place," writes Katie Keach, deputy chief of staff for Todd Gloria's office. "If something urgent comes up, staff will work with the council district on solutions."